As in English, key issues with the translation of French contracts revolve around:
- differences in Anglosaxon vs Frencophone legal systems;
- the use of what are now archaic words and phrases in legal parlance: the translation of these may be particularly troublesome because a mainstream dictionary may in effect give you what is the wrong (=modern) interpretation for the purposes of a legal translation;
- the use of technical/otherwise unusual words: these may technical legal or financial jargon whose interpretation is not readily listen in mainstream dictionaries.
The article deals with a few examples of such words and phrases to highlight some of the difficulties involved in producing a good, accurate translation of a French contract or other legal material.
Suggestions for additions to the article, as well as any material appearing on the French Linguistics site, are always welcome.